Sunday, November 24, 2013

Hello again

It's been a while....lots going on behind the scenes.

In recent months, I've been getting ready for a Holiday Bazaar in my daughter's community. Here's a sampling of what we hope to share with the festive shoppers....

A small assortment of baby quilts:


We have a couple of definitely PINK - a certainly BLUE, and a hmmmm.......

Then, there's some crazy stuff. A very quirky table runner with flowers popping up from the centers.

A couple of whacky Santa stockings.....oh my!

Our teen and 'tween purse collection is pretty expansive. Many more than you see here - and includes adult eyeglass cases, and assorted quilted pockets to store your iPhone, coins, or jewelry.

And just in case you thought our little shop, "Carrie and Pat's This and Thats" was done.....ah, contrare'.....

There will be jeweled wine charms, a few original, artistic wall pieces, and a limited collection of decoupage'd furniture for the small set. The elves are exhausted!!!

* * *

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Relishing the Muse

If you're creative, you know the feeling. Inspiration hits you at some odd hour or place, right in the middle of a ton of other things that need doing. It takes some practice to "go with the flow", and it's impromptu arrival is often not pretty. I was about to attend to my working environment - already rather disorganized - when the muse called me in a new direction.

Here's something I literally tripped over in my yard. A burl, or knot, or chunk of root, I can't say. But the grain and twists are so lovely. After a brief soak in bleach to brighten the wood, it has dried nicely and all bits of crumbling and debris have been removed with picks and an exacto knife. This object would fit in your hand; its about the size of a piece of fruit.

I envision a thin coat of gel medium or poly to protect the wood. I don't want this to interfere with the fine lines and striations, so I will be careful to avoid puddling the finish. This find has plenty of potential and I want to display it in some "artsy" way, either in a shadow box arrangement or perhaps as a piece of jewelry. Where will my feelings about it lead me? Ideas can be so exciting! I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Sneaking A Peak

This is not the "official", well lighted image that I need to do - eventually - but it gives you a glimpse of the outcome I achieved.

Two years ago I took these photos of Siberian iris, violets and clematis vines in my garden.  I was so taken with them, that I chose the iris for my google icon.  When my ARTAA group decided to do a project in "blue" this spring, my iris came to mind.

But we had planned to take a bit of time away from the snow, so I packed up the completed quilt top to work on while away. I was well organized for the quilting aspect, but ill-prepared for the complications of sewing outside of my studio.  Part of my satisfaction with this piece is the way it turned out in spite of some improvisions, like working from this sofa table!

This is my favorite style of art quilting.  Not only do I get to revisit the photography session that drew my attention in the first place, I get to fondle the art shapes with the needle of my machine, coloring each edge and enhancing the image with highlights I control.  Threads make the photo come alive, as you can see in the views below.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Inventive Minds Prevail, regardless...

Recent work,  done from an unfamiliar location, has proved challenging.  While I thought I'd packed all the supplies I needed, I quickly noticed that I needed a "favorite" pick I use for pulling errant threads.
It's a skewer-type, wooden stick, smooth, non-cutting, and ever so efficient!

So, at dinner one night, I ordered a dish that came with chop sticks.  Whollah!!  An idea.
With a little shaving and filing, I made myself a similar device.  I'm a happy camper now, and thread pulling can continue......

I'm working on an image piece, full of blues, and quite happy with the outcome so far.  The rhythm of the stitches is important to the overall design.  Hence, "unsewing" is part of my process for a pleasing result.  Now I have a wooden pick.  YAY!!

Friday, December 28, 2012

"These are a few of my favorite things".....

I'm still singing Christmas music, and here's a little something I absolutely love doing. Playing!!!!
Santa brought me some fabric swatches for Christmas. (Thank you sweetie!)
I washed them yesterday - 22 in all - and now I'm organizing them.  (WHOO - HOO!)

First, the lavendar group:  This is a classic little girl medley. Gonna' be FUN.

And probably the most imaginative selection.  Starting with a hand dyed piece on the bottom, I envision some shades to pick up the spectacular softness of this print.  I have to choose the right application for this group.  Yummy.

What on earth will happen with this group?  How bright!

Finally, this package has some options - and the two don't go together (in my world).  There is the soft, shades of a tropical nature - or using some of the same pieces, the familiar Howard Johnson's color scheme.  (I know - I date myself!)

So - which are your "favorite things?"

Thursday, December 20, 2012

In Santa Claus lane....

......the elves have been busy once again, dreaming up unique family gifts.

For a little munchkin in our family - the last of the little girls - a baby doll quilt and pillow.

I can just picture this little pip, making her baby comfortable with these.  A little more hand stitching, and it's off to Santa's sleigh......

I had originally gathered the remnants of my earliest quilt attempts from years ago, a series of 9 patches in really wonky condition. Placed in certain ways, they came together in a sweet doll quilt shape that was to be my gift. But then, a friend cautioned that I might want to "save" my original work for myself. She was right; I am a nostalgia nut and I have the perfect application for using it.  Just need to find a baby doll or teddy to dress it up.

The quilt.............
16" x 21"

                                                                                  ..... and the cradle.

(I did this in decoupage' a few months ago.)
It looks like I need a puffy mattress and pillow, too.
More fun!!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A little "brightness" story

I am so excited about my new ceiling lights.  It took my guy much longer than he expected, and of course, there were so many snags along the way.  But just look at the great results. With all this candle power, I can now remove space consuming "table lamps" and generate even more space in my studio.  This feels so professional now.

My give-away Christmas quilt is finished.  Because I used so many assorted scraps of reds and greens, much of it unwashed, I was breathless while I threw it into the washing machine for it's first experience.  I used Synthrapol and two color catchers to insure a good outcome, and then crossed my fingers.  Countdown:  30, 29, 28, 27............

It turned out GREAT.  Bright, soft and quilted so nicely.  The new owner is going to enjoy this and I'm satisfied that the colors won't run.

Here's a close-up of the crazy log cabin design...

and the random, leaves and vines quilting that I used throughout......

It's always fun to do a community endeavor.  Go brighten someone's day, little quilt.

Merry Christmas!!